Poland plans major aid package for national airline

Darek Delmanowicz/PAP

Poland plans up to PLN 2.94 billion (around EUR 658 million) in state support for its flag airline LOT as it struggles with the crisis caused by the Covid-19 pandemic, the government's draft law shows.

"Restrictions introduced in the movement of people, including using air transport, have resulted in disturbances to the operational activity and financial situation of entities operating in this industry," reads the government's draft published on Friday.

It added there is need for quick acceptance of the plan because "according to the information provided by the management board of PLL LOT, the company will lose financial liquidity on Dec 31."

Under the state aid package, PLN 1.14 billion is to be allocated to increasing LOT's share capital. The company will also receive a PLN 1.8 billion liquidity loan from the Polish Development Fund (PFR).

PFR head Pawel Borys tweeted that the loan for LOT should be available within a week.

The government support is meant to ensure liquidity, profitability and restore the capital structure of PLL LOT from before the Covid-19 epidemic, according to the draft

Poland has already started talks with the European Commission on the proposed aid instruments, the document added.